Campbell Soup Co. (NYSE: CPB) has completed the acquisition of Kelsen Group A/S, a producer of baked snacks under the Kjeldsens and Royal Dansk brands, from private equity firm Maj Invest, a Copenhagen-based private equity firm that invests in Danish companies, for undisclosed terms.
Based in Nørre Snede, Denmark, Kelsen produces baked snacks that are sold in 85 countries around the world. Primary brands include Kjeldsens and Royal Dansk. Kelsen has established distribution networks in Asia, South America, the Middle East and Africa, as well as the U.S. Kelsen has been exporting Danish butter cookies to China for more than 20 years.
“The acquisition of Kelsen, with its strong brand awareness in China and Hong Kong, is an ideal complement to Campbell's global baked snack businesses and a platform for additional growth for Campbell in key emerging markets," says Luca Mignini, president, Campbell International, who is overseeing operation of Kelsen as a standalone business. Senior members of Kelsen's management team, including Brian Ronsholdt, CEO of Kelsen Group, continue to lead the business.
Founded in 1869, Camden, N.J.-based Campbell houses a plethora of well-known brands, including Campbell’s, Pepperidge Farm and V8. In May, the company announced the purchase of Plum Organics, which makes organic snacks for children.
As consumers increasingly embrace eating habits they believe will improve their overall health, including eating smaller meals more frequently, M&A deals in the snack sector are abundant. For more on the trend, check back soon for the September issue of Mergers & Acquisitions.